tv Americas News Headquarters FOX News May 25, 2014 9:00am-9:31am PDT
service to our country and how much we appreciate it on this memorial day weekend. we're back here next sunday morning, 11:00 and 5:00 eastern with the latest buzz. hope you go to our facebook page and home page, foxnews.com/mediabuzz. thank you for watching. >> and a fox news alert on this memorial day weekend. the president of the united states has just landed in afghanistan. president obama visiting the u.s. troops there on this memorial day sunday. we were told he will not be meeting with president hamid karzai. this, of course, after the election there amid tensions and problems with the karzai administration. again, the president spending this memorial day weekend in afghanistan. this is the fourth trip that the president had made to afghanistan. he's made three as president, one as senator. the fact he's spent the last three memorial day weekends, sundays, at arlington national cemetery national cemetery.
in 2012 he spoke at the vietnam veterans war memorial and spent 2010 back home in chicago, but the president, we have just learned today, in afghanistan, of course, amid the continuing v.a. scandal, the president paying tribute to those who are so honorably and bravely serving on the front lines in afghanistan. much more on this developing story of the president's visit as we continue today. >> and more on the horrific killing spree in isla vista, california near the university of california santa barbara. police trying to piece together the background and mental history of 22-year-old elliot rodger, the alleged gun men. rodger has been characterized for month before the attacks as mentally disturbed. he's son of a hollywood director who aired his hatred for humanity and the blond college co-eds in the disturbing youtube videos and his chilling 141-page manifesto. this is america's news
headquarters. i'm eric shawn. >> and i'm arthel neville, and the white house releasing a statement moments ago saying in part the president and first lady's thoughts and prayers go out to the families and friends who lost a loved one as a result of the horrific shooting. meanwhile, police say elliot rodger stabbed three men to death in his apartment before starting the shooting spree saying he went from location to location and opened fire on random people before engaging gunfire with law enforcement and crashing his black bmw. dominic dinatale from isla vista. several people turned out for the vigil. this tragedy rocked this community. still, were they expecting such a turnout? >> reporter: i don't think anyone was entirely sure quite how large the crowd would actually be. one estimate was that there were 5,000 people that turned out. it was impossible to count the numbers, but you know what?
using social media like twitter and facebook and instagram it's not surprising that in a student community like this so many people turned out for the vigil and it was a very moving and very solemn one as they walk in procession around the students' enclave here. you know what? everybody was silent. everybody was thoughtful and respectful. this sunday morning it's exceptionally quiet here on the campus. you would expect a few people milling around roughly by now. slow to wake up on a weekend morning but still this morning it's particularly still. we'll get more details coming out of investigation of just what they know about elliot rodger and precisely more about the sequence of events and perhaps some details about who those three men were that were killed in his apartment complex just a few yards from where we stand here, arthel. >> as the details are coming in, we're learning more about elliot rodger's mental state. what is the family's lawyer telling us about that?
>> reporter: well, he was saying that elliotias suffering from asperger's syndrome and was in a fully functional state. he added he had been in therapy and continued to be in therapy. we don't know precisely from his medical professionals yet what exactly that kind of therapy was, but he clearly had issues in dealing with other people. very poor poor social skills, by the sounds of it, and very much had issues with his roommatt mate because back in january he made a citizen's arrest of his roommate over an argument over $22 word of candles. the police found that to be quite odd and something that they highlighted in the briefing that they held yesterday, so with all those problems, and it looks like the people living around him complicated his life further, in his mind, when you hear the video ramblings and manifesto and it will take police some days to police it together. arthel? >> indeed.
thank you very much for that update. eric? >> arthel, how did elliot rodger fall through the cracks? you know, he fooled police when he went to the apartment and questioned him. went to multiple therapies and his being diagnosed, family lawyer said, with high functioning asperger's. this morning bill brown said when the deputies went to the apartment and talked to him he was able to convince them he was fine. >> when be read his autobiography and manifesto that he wrote it's very apparent that he was able to convince many people for many years that he didn't have this deep underlying obvious mental illness that ultimately manifested itself in this terrible tragedy. >> congressman tim murphy, a psychologist, has raised this issue. when police interviewed him, was the college notified? elliot's psychologist, therapists see the video and act properly? was elliot still in treatment or did he, like so many of the other shooters, refuse to
cooperate with treatment? was he taken to the hospital for mental evaluation or police? murphy's legislation. the helping families and mental health crisis act would not be on some federal privacy rules so parents can better deal with young people between the ages of 18 and 25, just like elliot rodger who apparently suffered from mental illness. >> going to the polls to elect a new president and only a fraction of polling stations in the east are working. with pro-russia separatists smashing ballot boxes and intimidating voters, greg palkot live from donetsk. greg? >> reporter: the polls close in the crucial presidential elections in just about one hour's time but that's irrelevant, as you know, for a lot of people here in this region. they did not have the chance to vote.
pro-russia separatists intent on derailing this election seized and smashed those ballot boxes, attacked polling stations, blocked voters and showed off their well-armed muscle around town. for example, here in the city of donetsk, population 1 million, nobody voting and same for the other city across the region. officials say only around 20% of the election districts were functioning. we stopped in on one, and here is what we saw. take a look. you're looking at something very rare in eastern ukraine, voting in the presidential elections here. the turnout, we're told, is very norm a. however, the people here, we're also told are a bit nervous. even in that town we saw a heavily armed pro-kiev militia stationed just around the corner from that voting waiting to do battle with rebel militants if they showed up. across the rest of the country
voting went as planned. turnout was said to be high. from the pro-democracy uprisings that we saw here earlier this year. the front-runner in the polls, billionaire by the name of poroshenko. he claims he can solve the problem in a couple of months and deal with russia and vladimir putin at the same time. that's a tall order for anyone. back to you, arthel. >> agree with that. thank you very much for that report. >> russian president vladimir putin says his country will respect today's landmark presidential vote in ukraine, but that pledge, as greg just reported, is doing nothing to cool off the tensions. with the pro-russian separatists trying to derail this vote, destroying ballot boxes and blocking access to some voting centers, will this vote be legitimate? joining us now is ambassador to the united nations, john bolton, contributor and senior fellow at the american enterprise center. ambassador, putin's promise, do
you buy it? >> i think he'll respect the results and ignore them essentially. we still don't know what the total turnout will be and how it varies among the different regions. to see whether the leading candidate does get over 50% and, thereby, avoids a runoff. even if poroshenko wins and even if the turnout is high, then i think from putin's point of view the real game begins, and he'll try to negotiate and perhaps has already started negotiating with poroshenko to see what kind of a relationship ukraine under a new president will have with russia and that's really what putin is interested in. >> in terms of the vote, what do you think is happening? pro-russian separatists smashing ballot boxes and blocking polls, shutting some of this stuff down. >> this is why putin needs to declare the results nationwide in ukraine illegitimate, and certainly in those two provinces, a small percentage of people will even be able to
vote, would i like to see what the turnout is in other pro-russian quote, unquote, part of the country. >> but i think what putin is doing, he can do this in some of the other provinces and that's why basically it comes down not to the will of the voters but to what poroshenko if he in fact wins, what kind of deal he's able to cut with putin. putin's objective here is to have sufficient instability in ukraine that he can get from the government in kiev the kind of complaint relationship to moscow that i think has been his objective all along. >> poroshenko the leading candidate. we'll find out he's a billionaire candy-maker/manufacturer. meanwhile, breaking news, ambassador. the president has now arrived in afghanistan. he's there today on memorial day weekend. what is your view on that? >> well, i think it's entirely appropriate and fitting that the president do one of these surprise visits to afghanistan where obviously americans are still in combat on memorial day
weekend. i think he is fulfilling a function that presidents should really to show solidarity with the troops. i think he's also setting the stage for his speech on wednesday at west point where he's said to be foreshadowing what an obama foreign policy will look like for the next two and a half years. his advisors don't think he's done a good job in laying out what his policy is. i think most people would agree with that, so this is a -- certainly a good way to open the week for the speech that will have a lot riding on from his perspective on national security. >> ambassador john bolton, thank you so much for the insight, the president in afghanistan, and we will be following that. arthel. >> thank you. >> meanwhile, we want to go to the whout white house where wendall goler is standing by live there. ambassador bolton just gave his assessment to the importance of the president's visit there.
i would like to know is there more to what the president acting as commander in chief and visiting with the troops on this memorial day weekend? >> well, art eshlgs for security reasons they kept the visit quiet. they did not announce it until the president was actually on the ground at baghram air base in afghanistan. this is his fourth visit there as president. the last time he went was in 2012, almost a year after the raid that killed osama bin laden. he went twice in 2010 as well. the last time he was there he signed an agreement with president hamid karzai to keep a limited number of troops in afghanistan after the withdrawal at the end of this year, these troops to be used for training and for anti-terrorism missions. hamid karzai has since backed out of that and the front-runner in the election held earlier this month, abdullah abdullah has promised to fulfill that agreement. run off to be held june 14.
defense experts say it's important to keep a limited number of troops in afghanistan to keep it from falling back in the problems that you see now in iraq, to keep the taliban from regaining control and to retain the authority of the central government. the cloud over this visit, that ambassador bolton was talking, is the scandal at the v.a. about some allegations hid the long time veterans were waiting for medical care. the president waiting for a report now from v.a. eric shinseki on how widespread the problem is and he's trying to keep shinseki on the job to fix the problem that even a number of republicans and even some democrats are saying the secretary should come down. the president saying they will allow vets to get care at private facilities in order to ease the demand on the v.a. system. in a statement yesterday
secretary shinseki said he's enhancing the ability of some v.a. facilities so that veterans can get care sooner. arthel? >> indeed. thank you very much for that report from the white house, and we want to let everybody know that we'll be talking more on this v.a. scandal with the national legislative director for the american legion to get his take on that. wendall goler, again, thank you very much. >> the president is in afghanistan and in washington, d.c. it's time for rolling thunder. we'll have a live up-close look at this special memorial day edition straight ahead.
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>> reporter: really support from both sides of the aisle for the obama administration's aisle to allowed veterans to get private medical care amid mounting accusations that patients were left without needed care at veterans hospitals. congressman jeff miller of florida supports the idea of allowing some veterans to get care at private hospitals and says this is not simple police an issue of leadership as some continue kag for the resignation of v.a. secretary eric shinseki. >> this is much larger than the secretary of the department of veterans affairs. >> like what? >> well, you've got an entrenched bureaucracy that exists out there that's not held accountable, that is shooting for goals, goals that are not helping the veteran. the person that's supposed to be served is not the bureaucrat, it's the veteran. >> and miller wonders why it took so long for the administration to take this latest action. eric? >> yeah. steve, the inspectors general of the veterans administration is investigating the allegations dealing with the deaths, but department of justice hasn't
launched an investigation yet. how about that? >> no, they haven't yet and senator richard blumenthal of connecticut is calling for just that. he says the justice department should look into this matter. here's what he had to say this morning. >> the department of justice has to be involved. i've urged secretary shinseki privately and in fact publicly to request and involve the department of justice. these are allegations, but there's evidence to support them. we're not rushing to judgment, but the department of justice can conkorean a grand jury, if necessary. the i.g. cannot reflect and present an outside independent authority that can offer accountability and the perception of account ability and restore trust and confidence on the part of veterans. that has to be our focus. accountability is a means to the end of assuring better health care. >> the v.a., of course, has been struggling to keep up with that influx of patients from iraq and
afghanistan. >> very troubling, of course. and in just a moment we'll hear from the veterans side as an member of the american legion will be here with us on the fox news channel. stay with us. are so outta here! aah! [ female announcer ] the complete balanced nutrition of great-tasting ensure. 24 vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, and 9 grams of protein. [ bottle ] ensure®. nutrition inharge™. [ bottle ] ensure®. carsthey're why we innovate. they're who we protect. they're why we make life less complicated. it's about people.
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i'm looking at you phone company dsl. check your speed. see how fast your internet can be. switch now and add voice and tv for $34.90. comcast business built for business. in a fox news alert, president obama, a photo here of the president landing just moments ago at baghram air field in afghanistan for a surprise visit with the troops on this memorial day weekend. of course, this visit is happening amidst the scandal that is rocking the department of veteran affairs, casting a pall over this memorial day weekend. i want to bring in master sergeant louis chilli, national legislative director of the american legion. sir, thanks for joining us. >> thank you for having me this morning. >> well, i'd like to know, first of all, of course, we know the president there is doing his job as commander in chief visiting
the troops to bolster or boost their moral,ets, but do you think that the president will have to address the v.a. scandal with the troops there? >> you know, i'm really not sure how many the troops over there has been tracking this problem but i'm absolutely sure that someone will ask him the question and i'm sure that the president will be prepared to answer that. >> and let's talk about the white house and their announcing less than 24 hours ago that more vets will be allowed to seek care at non-v.a. facilities. i would like to get your reaction to that, and do you think, sir, that vets can actually get good medical attention outside of the v.a. health care system? >> the american legion has always supported contracted care. our biggest concern is to make sure that the records of that care are properly transmitted back to the department of veteran affairs and that the physicians that our veterans go see that are outside the network have access to the veterans records so that they have a holistic picture of what that veteran needs. we want to make sure that the
primary source of care is a department of veterans affairs but at times when the v.a. cannot see these veterans they do need to get care as quickly as possible. >> and then so, of course, getting care for the vets immediately is something that you believe should take place and then systematically, how do we go about changing the plagued v.a. health care program? >> i'm sorry, how do we go about changing what? >> systematically -- you gave me an idea of what the immediate needs are which is to make sure that the veterans can get access if it is outside of the system, how they get the health care they need, but before -- we're running out of time. do you think shinseki should resign, sir, sorry to do this to you, yes or no. >> that's our official position, has it has. >> thank you.
i'm arthel neville. time for "sunday housecall." >> joining us as he always is dr. marc siegel, professor of medicined a nyu's langone medical center and author of "unlocking the secret code of sickness and health." >> and dr. david samadi from lennox hill hospital and chief of robotic surgery. hello. >> good to see both you. >> the latest beef recall, highlighting the importance of taking right precautions when firing up the grill this memorial day weekend or whenever